A FORMER Bay resident has walked 2 298km around South Africa in an effort to raise funds for charity.
Roy Brown’s (38), journey started in August from the Comrades Marathon’s starting line, as an ambassador for Families South Africa (FAMSA) and Pietermaritzburg Agency for Community Social Action (PACSA).
Since then, Brown has battled the elements; walking through strong winds, rain and scorching temperatures.
He has spent the last month relying on the support of his family and goodwill gestures from businesses.
“I’ve always wanted to do something big like this. I’ve seen people make these big gestures and raise money for charity.
“I chose to give back to these charities because they have really helped me during a tough time in my life. I don’t know where I would be without them,” Brown said.
PACSA fights social justice to promote equality, justice and dignity in communities. FAMSA is a non-profit organisation helping families, communities through violence, trauma, poverty, HIV/AIDS and abusive relationships.
“I will be wearing T-shirts with the names and numbers of both organisations for people to call and make donations. I am blessed to have several organisations and companies who have come on board to assist me with accommodation, food and medical assistance during my journey.”
In preparation for his journey, Brown has been walking approximately 30km a day. He will walk to Johannesburg, Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, Durban and Pietermaritzburg.
Staying at the Harbour’s Master House in Central, he described himself as an outdoor and sporty person.
“It’s all a state of mind; each day is a new day. If it’s cold and wet and I’m in the middle of nowhere, I know I have to keep going.”
However, each day brings a different obstacle for Brown as he also faced the hardships of violence in the crime-ridden towns.
“I have been mugged so many times, but then I just stop to think of the goal I’m trying to achieve. Problem solving is at its most important when one is faced with crime. A bad choice or a bad decision can be catastrophic, so I focus daily on getting from A to B safely.”
On the bright side, his journey has its highlights. Brown has seen historic sites, breathtaking views and met people from all walks of life.
“It’s been an amazing experience so far.
“When I get tired, I visualise the bigger picture; its about a worthy cause to help others.”
To make a donation, call PACSA on 033 342 0052, or FAMSA on 041 585 9393.